The Cohort: Reign of Winter

A play-by-post quest through Pathfinder's Reign of Winter Adventure Path!
 
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 Building your characters

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Chris
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Posts : 22
Join date : 2018-01-17
Age : 28
Location : Newark, DE

PostSubject: Building your characters   Wed Jan 17, 2018 6:33 pm

As an RPG, Pathfinder features a staggering amount of customization that's possible for characters and GMs; with all those intricacies, however, it can often be a daunting task to do something as basic as create a character.

The most critical aspect of Pathfinder character creation is your class selection. Class determines your in- and out-of-combat role: how comfortable you are getting hit, sweet-talking a reluctant contact, or deciphering those ancient runes. Because most Paizo-published adventure paths are balanced around having certain roles fulfilled (front-line tank, buffer/debuffer, damage dealer, healer, arcane caster) we might have to do some negotiation if everyone wants to play a Rogue or a Wizard, but otherwise I want you guys to have fun with it. For your reference, a complete list of Pathfinder classes can be found here. We'll be playing with the Core, Base, and Hybrid classes, although this being an Asian mythology-themed adventure path, you're also free to pick up the Samurai or Ninja from the Alternate Classes. If you pick a class that's known to be somewhat weak, I'll help you optimize it so you can make a balanced contribution to the team.

The next step is setting your attribute scores. These scores--Strength, Dexterity, Constitution, Intelligence, Wisdom, and Charisma--determine who your character is and what they're good at. Most classes in the game ask you to excel in one or more attribute areas, so you'll have to know which class you want to play before you can decide which stats are important: a Cleric, for example, will want a very good Wisdom score, while a Bard will go for Charisma out the wazoo. Most Pathfinder campaigns these days avoid rolling for stats because you can very easily wind up cripplingly underpowered or cripplingly overpowered. The workaround for this has been to use a point buy calculator, which lets you "purchase" attributes instead of rolling randomly for them. We'll be using 25-point buy, because we're all new to this and I don't want monsters to smoosh you in case we're not perfectly optimized.

Then, we pick our race. In most games, most players will be members of the Core Races: Elves, Dwarves, Gnomes, Halflings, Humans, Half-Elves, and Half-Orcs. That said, many of the cooler races are on the Featured Races list, so I won't deny you that if you want to play one. In addition to giving you special abilities, different races modify your stats differently; you wouldn't want to play a race with a penalty to INT as a Wizard, for example, because INT is the Wizard's casting stat.

Now it's time to fill out your character sheet! We've already picked a simple-to-use tool that can be found in the group's Google Drive.

This being a 1st-level party to begin with, everyone will get to select one feat. Feats aren't big features of 5e, but they define Pathfinder. Every player gets a feat at every odd level, with some classes getting bonus feats and one race (Human) getting a bonus feat at 1st level. I've given everyone two additional feats to cut down on the "feat taxes" in Pathfinder--i.e., feats that don't do anything interesting on their own but function as prerequisites for other things. The selection of feats in this RPG is staggering, so don't hesitate to come to me for help; if you tell me what you want to be able to do in combat (e.g., "I want to drunkenly wield two broken bottles as weapons") I'll help you build it.

Skills, spells, and gear are the last elements of any character, but I want to be able to talk all those out with you, as it often takes some coordination between members to make sure you've got all your bases covered.

I think that's about it! Let me know when you've got questions. I've been researching Pathfinder pretty intensively for about a year and a half now, and there are still new things I'm learning all the time.
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